A narrative that has been allowed to establish itself over 50 years (a period that for many people spans their whole life) is not knocked over from one day to the next. It takes time to erode and get corrected by facts.
Changing personal narratives and belief systems can happen in a flash, a moment of insight, where suddenly everything falls into place and a very ordinary situation is instantly seen in new light and understood totally differently. But it can also be a process of many years, where facts trickle in slowly and it takes a lot of time to finally accept that what one had believed all these years was not real, or not a correct description of reality.
It is only logical and self-evident that an established COLLECTIVE belief will always be hard to replace, as first a critical mass of the group needs to understand individually that the belief is flawed and needs adjusting to something more truthful. As we all know, a collective aha-erlebnis is very hard to come by, and the understanding of historical events and reality changes rather slowly, even though in hindsight and the course of history, a decade or two seem like an overnight change.
The narrative that the Aurovillage cult has created for itself is ingrained in many people, many members, who are not necessarily living here.
The secret of the success of the narrative is of course the Mother's Dream. The text that the Mother had written shortly before starting the Auroville project, resonates so deeply with all of us, that it automatically opens a conduit into our deepest being.
Advertisement and propaganda always use such vessels for their very dumb “you have to buy my product” messages. Tie it up to a very deeply resonating emotion, and your stupid “buy this” indoctrination is taken into the core of our being without our brains standing guard and reporting “this is stupid nonsense to be thrown into the waste-bin”.
With the Dream as a vessel, the Aurovillage narrative is a very deceptive message that resonates emotionally, bypassing the scrutiny of rationality and fact-finding that we, if we were not indoctrinated by our global western society, would have as our normal attitude to things we are “being told”.
It is therefore not miraculous that so many people, especially westerners, are easy prey for the Aurovillage cult. It all sounds so heavenly, and the reality is very quickly seen in the wishful-thinking light. The contradictions that one encounters when coming to visit the actual material reality are all brushed over, and pushed away with some flowery explanations like “well, it's a difficult task, but look at where we already are”, which is in fact an other way of saying “don't see what you see, see what I say”.
Over the decades, the Aurovillagers have created propaganda centres in different western countries, to fundraise for and promote Auroville.
The centres were named “Auroville International” centres, or AVI-centres. There are a handful of those, and they group together calling themselves “AVI”.
These groups exist of mainly older people who have a life-long interest in Auroville, visited many times, but for some reason have not been able to come and live here full-time. They have “promoting Auroville” as a hobby in their country of origin.
It is not hard to imagine the emotional set-up of these groups. Not being able to be a 'real' Aurovilian on the ground, not living the daily reality, only having experienced the surface of Auroville's material reality, constantly being fed only the rosy cult narratives which they then, as their set task, have to repeat all the time: the stage is set for AVI to be a trap for very rabid cult-narrative defenders.
So yes, what has come out of the “official” AVI mouth over the past months is – oh what a surprise – a complete repetition of the cult line, and is proudly posted on the Stand for Auroville Unity website.
Because if a lie is repeated long enough, it magically transforms into truth, no?
It's extremely repetitive, but breaking down the fossilised Aurovillage cult narrative takes hammering on the same spot for a long time.
Here's the latest “communication” from our dear friends, eternally stuck in the Aurovillage waiting room, the little boring space where only the lovely publicity posters keep the dream alive.
May 19, 2022
Your Excellency Shri R.N. Ravi, dear members of the Governing Board, Dr. Jayanti Ravi,
On April 21, a joint online meeting of the International Advisory Council (IAC) and the Auroville International (AVI) Board has taken place. At this first personal meeting we have found great agreement in our efforts and shared the mutual feeling of responsibility for supporting the development and unfolding of Auroville.
As representatives of the two international bodies of Auroville we have also discussed about the still unresolved visa issue, presently causing great uncertainty and anxiety among the non-Indian members of the Auroville community.
They immediately put themselves on the same level as the International Advisory Council, which is a legal entity created in the Auroville Foundation Act. AVI is nothing of the sort. It's a self-appointed club of Aurovillage fanatics who are for whatever reason materially unwilling or unable to join Auroville.
THAT DIFFERENCE IS CRUCIAL. We're in a legal battle at the moment.
This legal battle was started by the Aurovillagers, because the reality of Auroville completely contradicts the legal determinations of the Auroville Foundation Act. The Government of India, therefore, either through the Governing Board and the Auroville Foundation Office or by itself, is legally fully entitled to take any corrective measures it sees fit.
The Aurovillagers have no other recourse than to try to overturn the legal content of the Auroville Foundation Act through court orders.
This means that they have painted themselves into a very tiny corner, through their illegal but unchallenged actions that now suddenly are getting the full attention of the Central Government.
Remember: their arguments are based ONLY on the reality that they have created here over decades, in full contradiction of what Auroville was meant to be, and IN CONTRADICTION TO THE LAW.
Because they are being removed from their thrones BY THE LAW, they can only fight back with that same weapon. So they are constantly, endlessly putting out the narrative that in fact, according to the LAW, THEY are in their right. Which is a total lie.
Notice how it works: equate the self-help club of AVI with the IAC, and whoppaa: a semblance of legal standing, of validity, of being a rightful body whose words need to be taken into account, has been created out of thin air. Of course, being a very obedient part of the Aurovillage cult, they will never say anything that goes against the cult.
As we immediately can see in their first “concern”: the IMMEDIATE mention of the “anxiety” that the Aurovillagers are having right now, due to the threat of being eating alive by a drag– I mean: having a short-term visum instead of a long-term one.
The visa question is an issue of special concern for the Auroville International (AVI) association with regard to one of its functions, namely to offer information and support to people wanting to volunteer, offer their expertise or settle in Auroville. Supporting those people is one of AVI’s contributions to help the Auroville community to grow in numbers, to “boldly spring towards future realisations” and to become the “living embodiment of an actual human unity”, as stipulated by Auroville’s Charter.
We, Auroville International, have made several efforts in the meantime to receive reliable information about the criteria for the necessary recommendation letters for long-term visas, but have not received a reply. We know from reliable sources that, as of early May, the actual number of visa applications pending with the Auroville Foundation Office was 118, out of which 75 were visa extensions in India and 43 were letters of recommendation from abroad. These numbers will of course have varied since, but do reflect an abnormal situation. That is why we feel urged to address you once more with the request to clearly communicate to us what these criteria actually are.
Step out of the emotional corner they push you in from the very first moment, and look at things rationally.
I've said it before, but it is absolutely needed to repeat over and over again: ANY SPIRITUAL PATH IS INCOMPATIBLE WITH ANXIETY OVER SOMETHING LIKE A VISUM.
Every single word of the Mother is aimed at destroying fear as a basic, instinctive attitude in life. I'm not going to put quotes here, because literally the LEAST bit of study of the Mother's and Sri Aurobindo's writings will reveal the starting point of having to climb out of this most low level of consciousness in which fear is the justification for action. As if that wasn't totally self-evident and should be the deepest wish of every aspirant to a higher consciousness.
The Aurovillagers cannot claim to be on a very special and ground-breaking spiritual journey, and at the same time defend that they're peeing in their pants because they might get only a short-term visum. A very special and ground-breaking spiritual journey is not for comfort-zone-clinging luxury chickens.
Looking at the wording, one can only be amazed at the level of brainwashing that allows for such complete perversions of reality and the Charter of Auroville.
Auroville's population is abysmally small. The AVIs cannot explain that, because the only explanation is that Aurovillage has kept the door very closed over the decades: the little secret kingdoms here in this forgotten corner of the world did not need exposure to actual people coming to STAY here. Only faithful cult members were allowed to join, and everyone with a bit of common sense and a critical mind was pushed out, with great emotional pressure and damage. After having been financially bled dry.
Abusing the lines of the Charter “to boldly spring towards future realisation” and “be a living embodiment of an actual human unity” is a shameless disgrace: the exact opposite has been happening here, with racism and colonialism galore.
Due to this cult-cultivation, Auroville is notoriously poor in expertise and skills. Most of the people did not come to give their work and energy to the creation of a thriving city, but to enjoy life in a colonial setting, a nice little cult that claims that doing nothing at all is the height of spirituality.
We have an unbelievable lack of ALL needed skills to build and maintain a city. We have an overkill of self-acclaimed artists, therapists, masseurs, guesthouse owners, one-man-enterprises, and architects who hate Roger Anger and his Galaxy plan.
It is, now that the city is being built, more than ever painfully laid bare that we are a bunch of incompetent amateurs.
And if ever someone has some real skills or competence, the Aurovillage nonsensical “governance” structure will make sure they run away screaming, as they won't be allowed to get anything done.
In this regard we were informed as well about the seemingly intimidating character of visits by FRO officers to the homes of Aurovilians. According to their explanations the officers were sent by the Foundation office to find out about participation in or sympathy for actions taken by community members in the wake of the clearing of way for the Crown road. As far as we have learned there was no evidence of any illegal activity by those who were visited. So the question arises whether a disagreement with actions taken by the Foundation office is in itself seen as an offence calling for visa-related sanctions.
Now first of all: how innocent and non-intimidating is the fact that these same people we're supposed to feel so sorry for, filed a court case AGAINST THE FOUNDATION that claimed Auroville to be a “deemed forest”? Was THAT a noble and defendable act, certainly not something that could possible have some nasty consequences? Was that not something that possibly could shed some light on the matter these sweet AVI members are so deeply worried about?
What should be clear to really everybody, is that not being punished for a criminal activity of any kind for no matter how long, does not suddenly make you untouchable and above the applicable law. It's not a valid argument to claim that “we have been allowed to steal for 50 years, so now you can't tell us we can't steal anymore, you have to let us continue, it's now our right”.
Visa are permissions given by the government of a country to whomever they choose. The Government of India is not OBLIGED (on pain of NATO invasion?) to hand out 5-year visa to the Aurovillagers, unconditionally. Still, when you listen to all the output of the Aurovillager mouthpieces, they always say something that insinuates that this seems to be the case: not giving a (long-term) visum to an Aurovillager is implied to be a criminal offence of some sorts.
Does any of them ever care to inform that this regulation that created a policy in which the Auroville Foundation Office would first issue a 1-year visa, to be extended 3 times, and then issue a 5-year visa recommendation letter, to be extended without limit, has come into being only in 2006? For all the years before that, every Aurovilian was at the mercy of the FRRO. They issued whatever visum they felt like issuing. And still, even with this regulation in place, ambassadors are free to decide whatever they want. They are not obliged to execute the “recommendation”. Otherwise it wouldn't be a “recommendation letter” but an “order”.
But do notice the wording of this text of these unofficial Aurovillage sycophants. Aren't they clearly giving us the feeling that the Secretary is playing some dark game here, at the expense of these totally innocent and spiritual Aurovillagers?
Let's be clear: where is it written that foreigners in India have the right to block the execution of government developments? Obstruction of public works is a legal offence for Indians, would it suddenly be a right for foreigners? Why would such actions not be a very legitimate reason to revoke their visa? Because they “own” Auroville? Or what? What exactly IS the message here, the argument, other than “WE ARE ENTITLED TO THIS. GIVE IT TO US.”?
Are the arrogant, colonial, lecturing insults that these oh so polite AVI people are handing out between the lines going unnoticed here, you think? If you do: think again. And try to put yourself in the shoes of the Indian officials here. AVI is actively defending people who have called the Secretary a dictator and compared the Government of India to the Nazi regime. In my humble opinion: not a sign of intelligence and understanding of the situation. Let alone humility or other spiritual qualities.
We would be grateful for your clear statement to the questions we raised. As a body that interfaces between Auroville and the outside world we would like to do everything in our power to safeguard the excellent reputation Auroville enjoys in India and abroad.
Once again trying to create false credentials by claiming to be some “official body”. AVI IS NOTHING OFFICIAL. AVI is a self-appointed self-help group. Why on earth would the Governing Board have to answer to them?
And where in the world does Auroville have this “excellent reputation” that they claim to safeguard? In France maybe? Where Auroville is officially listed as a cult? Check the editing history of the Auroville wikipedia page. Is that full of edits about scandals or about the stellar achievements of Auroville?
Specifically in India, Auroville has quite a bad reputation, grown over the years as the dirt of what was happening here was trickling out into the public space. At the moment, many people who at least know something about Auroville will be extremely sceptical. Let's be clear: Auroville AS A SPIRITUAL PROJECT is great reason for pride in India: it is by all means one of the very, very few countries in the whole world – arguably the only one – that would accept to accommodate such a daring and high endeavour. And for that reason alone, Auroville is a jewel in India's Crown. And it is EXACTLY for this same reason, namely that the Aurovillagers are totally abusing this unique project to create their own colonial cult fiefdom, that Auroville has a very nasty taste for many Indians. How can the Government allow such a perversion, such a corruption, such a blatant abuse of India's generosity and spiritual greatness?
Once again, the words of the AVI people denounce a total disconnect with reality, and an unquestioning belief in whatever the cult feeds them.
In view of the most recent developments in Auroville we, the AVI Board, would like to state the following:
We stand for the respect of Auroville’s Charter, of the Auroville Foundation Act and of Indian law.
We consider, in accordance with the Auroville Foundation Act, the Auroville Residents Assembly to be a body equal to the Governing Board and the International Advisory Council in Auroville’s decision making.
Pardon me??? Anybody, the most lay-person as well, who reads the Auroville Foundation Act KNOWS that the Governing Board and the Residents' Assembly have never been created as EQUAL. It is as blatant as daylight from the descriptions of their functions. ONLY the GB has “powers” and decides anything, as they are the legal responsibles. And, again, why on earth would it be called the GOVERNING Board? The AVI cult members may consider anything they want, it doesn't make it reality, does it now?
So here again: pure parroting of the cult narrative of “we have the power”, a belief that is not based on ANY legal document, and has no other defence than “we have done like this for all this time, now you have to legally allow us to continue doing like this”.
Aren't these people boring? I suppose that's another tactic: behaving like a nagging child. Be so horribly repetitive and boring that nobody can stand you anymore and in the end just gives in. It worked for them for a long time. And they're in shock that it's not working this time around too.
We are in full respect of the recent decision taken by Auroville’s Residents Assembly to appoint a new Working Committee. We do not agree to or support intimidating actions taken against the members of this Working Committee.
Lovely. They express their respect for the Aurovillagers' blatant disrespect and rebellion. So they mean: “Just like the Aurovillagers, we wipe our beeps with the directives of the Governing Board, and join their claim that the Aurovillagers have all the rights to own and govern Auroville. Anybody who says or claims otherwise is a nasty beep. Put your “authority” where we think it!”
We stand for the development of the city and for an active and trusting collaboration. We appreciate actions against corruption and any kind of breach of law within the community but we insist that these actions have to be based on evidence and legal procedures.
Words, words, words, and nothing else. Certainly no actions.
The shamefully little that has been built and achieved in Auroville in no less than 54 years is the most blatant testimony to the unwillingness of the Aurovillagers to create Mother's Auroville.
And “evidence and legal procedures”?? Are you in ANY position to make demands, dear AVI people? Aurovillage, by its very set-up, has been an immense magnet for adventurers and misfits who want to give all “government” and “authority” the middle finger, and live it up.
What evidence and legal procedures are there to be found in this mini-community that has notoriously refused to do ANY proper administration and record-keeping? From the moment someone comes with whatever form that needs filling out, the whole gang screams “bureaucracy!!” on the top of their lungs, and that's the end of that. People have laughed at forms and registrations, haughtily told to shove it all where the sun doesn't shine. The ACUR management has refused to hand over the CCTV footage of the night in which the famous “Auroville needs to become Independent Nation NOW!” graffiti was put on the Youth Link wall.
In a place that is famous for its lawlessness, for the total obstruction of every legal procedure asked of it, suddenly the FOUNDATION OFFICE now needs to make sure that “evidence and legal procedures” are being followed to a T?
Wasn't Auroville too special for legalities? Wasn't all that stuff not simply “not applicable”, because you see, the spiritual enlightened beings here can't be held to the same standards as the outside world, can it now?
Seriously: are these people even remotely aware of how arrogantly they behave? I can only conclude that they aren't, and live in a reality of their own.
We value a professional administration based on Auroville’s values for the welfare of Auroville and its residents. Yet we also insist that no true listening or compassionate leadership and no collaboration with the whole community can be based on a policy causing a climate of stress and insecurity.
Oh really? Dear Aurovillage experts, if you value a professional administration, why did you not get professional administrators to join Auroville through all your decades of endless efforts and hard work? And why in Jove's name are you holding the Secretary and the Governing Board to standards that you have never even mentioned as long as the Holy RA cult was fully in charge of Auroville? Why now, suddenly, do these officials have to behave according to YOUR saintly standards, that we never ever saw a shadow of, in the history of Auroville?
Instead of lecturing the Foundation Office on how they have to do their job, don't you feel called to apologise for the frankly despicable way the Aurovillagers have treated Madam Secretary when she was in public meetings? Do you not feel called to make sure these people who seem to not even have the most basic notion of decent behaviour stop tearing your so treasured “excellent reputation” to shreds? Is there, after these 5 months, really nothing else you can do than to berate the people who are here to put right what has gone wrong?
Christian Feuillette AVI Chairman
Friederike Mühlhans AVI Secretary
You seem to not even have any idea of what “respect” entails. Until you get back down to reality, I doubt anybody other than the Aurovillagers wishes to avail of your services here, so don't even bother offering them.